Anorak News | Room To Move

Room To Move

by | 30th, September 2005

‘“IF ever there was a scandal waiting to happen,” begins Robert Cole in his business commentary in the Times.

Gordon realises that Tony’s gazumped him again

And having ventured to this esoteric part of the paper – one usually best left alone or else delivered to your accountant wrapped in a plain brown envelope – and seduced by the opening line, we dare to read on.

This impending scandal has nothing to do with Kate Moss nor Peter Doherty, not unless either of them plans to take up a new career as a vendor of pensions.

Cole says that the mass selling of self-invested personal pensions in what he terms the new “buy-what-you-please” regulations will be “violently abused”.

You see, as the Times’s front page reports, under Gordon Brown’s new scheme, there will be tax breaks on second homes. High earners, who pay the top rate of tax (40 per cent), will be able to cash in on what will effectively be a 40 per cent “discount” on second homes.

These top-rate taxpayers will be allowed to set the cost of their new properties against their tax bills.

But rather than seeing the threat of mis-selling, as the Times does, and fearing that “unscrupulous” property groups will heavily promote tax breaks, the main worry for most of us will be over house prices.

(Can you imagine a trusty and noble estate agent being allowed to provide financial advice? It could happen.)

A fresh influx of money into the stagnant yet still too high property market – the Times estimates a figure of as much £6million a year going into buying property under Gordon Brown’s scheme – will surely upset the market, and hardly make it easier for first-time buyers to get a foot on the property ladder.

Better perhaps to run while you can – the new rules come into effect in April. Pack up and leave the most expensive areas and head for the hills.

As the Telegraph reports, if you chose to escape an overpriced region like London, you’ll find you’re not the only new face in the village.

The Office for National Statistics says that the rural population is growing eight times faster than that of inner cities.

Last year alone, 116,000 people changed their lives in the capital for a less expensive and greener existence elsewhere.

This might well explain why it is that everywhere you go in Britain, young men talk like Cockney geysers, schoolgirls are “well vexed” with life and old women can remember the time before the new housing estates went up when it was all fields as far as the eye could see…’

Posted: 30th, September 2005 | In: Uncategorized Comment | TrackBack | Permalink